Date: 21st June 2011 at 4:49pm
Written by:

Ashley Young

Is the Villa winger destined for a starring role next season?

We’re heavily linked with Ashley Young of Villa.  Forgive me for stating the obvious.  But we are.

Every report for the last three weeks has told us that the deal to wrap him up is “just days away”, and blogs, tweets and fan forums , albeit quite calm at the moment while he’s getting hitched, have been getting quite excited at the prospect. But why?  What do we know about Ashley Young?

Is he really the man who, could be, our marquee summer signing? I’ll be honest – I really don’t know much about him.  I’ve seen Villa games on TV where he’s probably played, but in all honesty I couldn’t tell you if his name was on the team sheet or not.  Not being negative about him at all, but I don’t recall watching a Villa match, and him being an outstanding player – wowing me senseless and getting me to think: “I wish he was at United”.  Same as I wouldn’t know if Carlos Cuellar was playing in the same match.

So this gets me thinking about the current players we have at Old Trafford who plays in Young’s position.  Nani, Giggs, Valencia, Park.  Do I think he’s better than them?  Well, Giggs is getting on…but is utilised in central midfield a lot.  I want Nani in the team most weeks.  Yes he can be a bit headless chicken sometimes, but we all know that he creates, he scores, he penetrates, and he’s our most flair player of the moment.  Rumour has it he’s on his way…if he does go, whoever he signs for’s gain, and our loss. Tony V.  Does this guy ever get anything wrong?  Barely. He’s a fighter, as well as someone who beats the full back, crosses accurately, and you feel safe with him in the team. Park is a yappy little terrier who puts in the mileage, spots the passes and is quietly a key player. From my knowledge of these guys, including the potential new signing…I’d choose all four of them over Ashley Young.

So now I look at his other Villa team mates, and his England call ups over the last 12 months.  Young and Downing are the Villa wingers. I don’t rate Downing, and think he’s probably punching above his weight at Villa anyway.  But then I ask why has Downing been continuously called up for England, and had a lot of game time…and Young been left out, in the under 21s, or on the bench for England for the best part? So I look for the answer to the people who know him better than I do.  The users on the Aston Villa fan forums.  I wonder what they say about the want away winger? He doesn’t get the most positive reviews from some of the Villa faithful to be fair.  I get the impression that on his day he can be electric, but more often than not he’s “erratic”, “hasn’t got any ideas” and they think that Villa should cash and invest the multimillions elsewhere in the squad before the real Ashley Young gets found out. None of this points at Young being the type of player we need to bolster a squad who are always competing for the title, and fight to the bitter end to get in to the Champions League final.

It seems a bit of a flat signing to me, hyped up in the media, and making reds as giddy as scousers over the return of King Kenny.

But then there’s this.  The United factor.  The ‘finishing school’ for those players who are about to become the next big thing, but need the coaching and the step up to top four and European level.  And this is where United’s less than illustrious big money signings have then gone on to become Fergie’s shrewdest signing since the last one. So, Ashley Young…what to make of it?

Well, I would have hoped that our main signing this summer would have been an established player, with experience of winning medals on the big stage, and being able to bring the team on a bit.  And that may still happen. But if Young is our biggest transfer of the summer, are we really kicking on from last term?  I hope he develops over a season, and that United fans don’t get carried away with the way he is portrayed by the press and expect him to be an instant hit.  Because Ashley Young isn’t a world beater.


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52 responses to “Why I’m Not Excited About Ashley Young”

  1. Aardvarked says:

    Clueless faux-journalism

    “I knownnext to nothing about the player so I will put that down to him not being a good player rather than me being an ignoramus.”

    Have to laugh at the people saying we’re skint after we’ve just bought Jones for £16m, Young will cost £15 and De Gea looks like coming for about £18m. Our only signing of the summer? There’s over two months before the window closes you knee-jerk buffoons.

  2. deadlinesman says:

    You use the term ‘marquee signing’. I stopped reading after that.

  3. david says:

    Your stating that young is man united big siging of the summer. I still think saf is going to sign a big name to fill in scholes shoes. youn gis a winger intended to replace giggs and possibly nani or park if one of them is sold.

  4. Bruise Lee says:

    The startling thing about this article is the author’s self-confessed position of knowing hardly anything about the subject. It should have halted at “I’ll be honest – I really don’t know much about him.”

    I think Ashley Young will do well for United. He has developed his game to play the deep lying supporting striker role as well as on the flank and he does put in a good ball. Giggs’s position is now covered and Rooney won’t have to play left wing.

    Alexis Sanchez is at least double the price & unproven in the PL. If Young has been erratic at Villa it is because he’s, erm, young, and has been maturing. He will win many England caps now.

    From what I’ve seen he’s coming nicely to the boil and if you throw him in with Phil Jones & David De Gea we have a nice nucleus of new young players in the right areas that negate the need for a City-esque “marquee signing”.

    Be careful what you wish for, you might just get a Veron.


    • Imam says:

      Agree with you Bruise, I think everyone were excited when we signed Veron, he was also one of the big buyings that summer, he put in some good shifts though, the rest was history.

    • Steve Crabtree says:

      Thanks for reading, Bruise.

      Did you read the full piece? You need to see beyond that point, and take in that I’ve looked in to the attributes of Young in various ways – in particular the views of those people who know better than the media, than me and than you – and that’s the Villa supporters. Many of the Villa fans above have echoed what I’ve written, so it’s not as if I’ve been fickle enough to just make something up off the top of my head. I could have written “Villa supporters are gutted at seeing him go, think he’s one of the best players in the world, and will be cutting up their season tickets if Randy Learner let’s him leave.” But they didn’t say that, so I didn’t write it.

      I’m only not excited by the signing….that’s all….I’ve not slated the guy, I hope he does well, and if you read right to the end you’ll see I’ve summed it up by mentioning the fact that coming to United could be the making of him. The “Finishing school” bit. Where regardless of what i’ve read about him, that could prove the catalyst for him to become the world beater.

      Looks like he’s pretty much in the bag now, so good luck to the new boy and hope he does well.

  5. Imam says:

    Maybe I’m in a minority here who do excited about Ashley Young. I think the thought of him being “unheard” or “not United quality” is a bit too soon.

    I agree with United being some sort of “finishing” school of football, it’s a place where you make or break.

    If you think we shouldn’t give him a chance, please take a minute and think about Ole, Vida, Evra, Yorke, Ronaldo, Da Silva Twins, or even Valencia.

    I believe there’s more that we thought couldn’t cut it at United, but look what they had done.

    PS: Before you shout the likes of Kleberson, Djemba2, Miller, Obertan, Bebe, Tosic, etc. Please keep in mind, that Ashley Young is AT LEAST have the PL experience. At least.

    Onwards and Upwards!

    • Steve Crabtree says:

      Hi Iman – thanks for reading

      I’ve not said that he shouldn’t be given a chance. Merely that I’m not excited by him, and from what I’ve read about him from the people who have watched him week in, week out – I don’t get the impression that he’s better than anything we’ve already got.

      But, I hope he is!

  6. Mitchum says:

    Ur a twat mate. You must not know much about football if you have never heard of Ashley young or Carlos Cuellar. I agree there both probably not a top 4 team member but still who gave you the job of blogging on this site. An autistic goat could write something for agreeable.

  7. Steve Crabtree says:

    Thanks to the Villa supporters who’ve taken time to give their views. A mixed reaction.

    NO-one seems gutted to see him leave Villa Park, but no-one seems ecstatic either. I get the impression from the comments above that he’s inconsistent. For him to nail that at United, he’ll probably need a good run in the side, regularly. He could end up with the Gibson treatment otherwise, and I hope he doesn’t become the new scapegoat as a result.

  8. OllieWillie says:

    This article should contain nothing but the words………WHY I’M NOT EXCITED ABOUT ASHLEY YOUNG…..Because I know nothing about him.

    How do you write several paragraphs after openly stating you don’t really watch him and don’t know him well.

    This blog has really lowered it’s colours

    • Steve Crabtree says:

      Again, as I’ve pointed out to others – I don’t know much about him.

      As you’ve misquoted me there, I’m not sure how much of the article you actually have read, but to enlighten, it’s centred around the fact that Villa fans don’t seem to hold him in too high regard. They don’t seem fussed that he’s leaving and that’s based on his football and nothing else.

      If you look at the Villa fans comments on the article, they echo what I’ve read, and subsequently written about. They know him better than me, you and the press.

      No disrespect to Villa, but when United are after a player, it’s normally one who their own fans rave about, love and adore and don’t want to leave. Now, nowhere have I laid in to Young, said that it’s a mistake signing him, or anything negative towards the guy…as I’ve said before – I don’t know much about him. But I’m not excited by him – certainly not as much as some fans – and the reaction of the Villa supporters is the main reason as to why.

      He may set Old Trafford alight – I hope he does – and I hope he has a great career with us.

  9. josh says:

    are u excited about him now? he’s playing outta his skin at the minute.another great fergie signing.